Beginning September 1, 2016, I will be a Professor of Economics at the University of Colorado Boulder. Eugene D. Eaton Jr. gave a large gift to the University of Colorado, of which a portion endows the Eugene D. Eaton Jr. Chair that I will hold.
I very much enjoyed my 29 years at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where I started with a brand new PhD in 1987. Because of my many years of service there, I am able to retire from the University of MIchigan rather than resign, and expect soon to be an Emeritus Professor of Economics and Emeritus Research Professor of Survey Research of the University of Michigan.
I think both the University of Colorado Boulder and the University of Michigan Economics Departments have a bright future–the University of Michigan Economics Department for well-known reasons. The University of Colorado Boulder has a recruiting asset that I did not fully appreciate until I arrived here: Colorado is much more beautiful than I had realized when I decided to come here. My wife Gail and I live next to walking trails that give us a wonderful view of the sunsets on the mountains during our evening walks. And we enjoy balmy breezes eating breakfast out of doors on a deck with a view of the mountains almost every day. All it will take to successfully recruit many other economists is to combine that beauty with the kind of fully competitive salary and teaching package they put together in my case.
When I first started talking to the University of Colorado Boulder Economics Department I emphasized that I was looking for help in dealing with the time crunch I face from pursuing a writing career as a blogger, part-time journalist, and monetary policy activist as well as pursuing many lines of academic research and a full life outside of work. I am very pleased to have the support to try to do it all.
Unlike many successful recruitments, this one did not stem from any substantial prior connection with other economists at my new university. Based on the small amount of time I have known them, I am quite impressed.
In talking to my colleagues at the University of Michigan about my impending move, I was surprised that among the arguments to stay at the University of Michigan, there were several accounts from colleagues who had moved from being a professor at some other university to the University of Michigan of how moving to a new environment had given them a creative boost. I look forward to the new insights I gain from a new environment.